I would like to wish you all a very happy and healthy 2018!
It was lovely to see our students return smiling and refreshed after the holidays. I would also like to extend a special welcome to all the new students who arrived this week. Our community of learners now exceeds 900 and in order to educate our increased numbers, two new classes have been opened in the Early Years Centre. Miss Isabelle has returned to BIS after a term away and is teaching the new Foundation Stage class and Natalie Hunt has moved from our Learning Support Department to become the new Year 1 teacher. Both members of staff are highly valued and I’m sure they will offer excellent learning experiences for our young learners.
Over the holidays, our foyer has been renovated in order to create a more open and welcoming space. Although the concept is not yet complete as we are waiting for furniture to enhance the new lounge meeting area, I would like to announce the opening of our new coffee shop. From Monday, visitors to the BIS will be able to purchase coffee, tea, soft drinks and snacks and either take them away or sit in and enjoy. The coffee shop will be open during school hours: from 7.30am to 4.30pm from Monday to Thursday and from 7.30am to 4.00pm on Friday. We hope to create a community feel in the foyer and are planning to offer live musical entertainment and informal meet and greet sessions. These will be advertised soon.
This term sees the introduction of our new Global Citizenship challenges which aim to involve all our students in active projects. Our whole school definition of Global Citizenship identifies key characteristics: Celebrating Diversity, Being Adaptable, Demonstrating Balance, Critical Thinking and Taking Action. The first area of focus is ‘Demonstrating Balance’ and students will be asked to show how they achieve intellectual, physical and emotional balance for the well-being of themselves and others. This is really important as we enter a period of mock exams for our IGCSE and IBDP students.
I would like to highlight two secondary projects, happening this week, which aim to help students become better global citizens. Firstly, our Year 12 students have spent 5 days in Mai Chau participating in community projects.
At BIS, we aim to make a difference to local communities through hands-on involvement which is a really good example of how students are applying the strand, ‘Taking Action’. A second example is a Year 7 project which I had the honour of joining yesterday. Our guests from the Xa Dan School for the profoundly deaf, are teaching BIS students a traditional Vietnamese song in sign language.
The global citizenship strand, ‘Celebrating Diversity’ was clear to see as all students showed empathy and respect for those who are different. The song, in sign language, will be performed for an audience during our Tet Assembly which all parents will be invited to attend.
Ms Sue Hill, Principal